You Can Travel to Arizona Agriculture's Farms

By Julie Murphree, Arizona Farm Bureau: During my college days, I became known for taking college friends to our farm in Maricopa, Arizona. One road trip in a line of beat-up, first-time owner cars on the back roads to the farm, one roadie told me later he didn't think his car would make it over all the roads I took him on.

Today, working for Arizona Farm Bureau I've come to appreciate Arizona families' interest in our farms and ranches. So, that's why I decided it was time we created a travel guide featuring our farms and ranches open to the public. 

Our new travel guide, "On the Arizona Road with Arizona Agriculture" features a farm and/or ranch in nearly every one of the state's counties.

But, before you go, here are a few tips. 

Arizona Agriculture Travel Tips

Arizona is one of the most diverse agricultural production states in the nation, producing more than 160 varieties of vegetables, livestock, field crops and nursery stock.This uniquely original desert state is a great place to live and enjoy the farm fresh products grown here.

This guide was designed to highlight the numerous agritainment farm locations and the  on-farm Farmers’ Markets in Arizona. 

Here are a few tips to get the most out of your farm experience:

  1. Go early. For the best selection of produce or U-pick operations, arriving early gives you first choice.

  1. Talk to the growers. Ask the grower what's new and how do they use their product (any recipes?). In fact, the on-farm farmers’ market is probably the best place to chat with the farmers and ranchers.They want to share their stories and they love to explain their production methods. You’ll be surprised at the invaluable information on even the most common fruits and vegetables.

  1. Ask about safety protocols. Ask the growers you meet if they have employed any safety practices to ensure the safety of their product (s). Many growers engage in what is know in the industry as “best management practices” that include methods for keeping their produce free from pathogens in the harvesting and packing process.

  1. Wear proper shoes. Make sure the entire family wears closed toed shoes for safety on the farm.

  1. Dress for the weather. Arizona summers are hot so wear cool clothes, a hat and sunscreen. Also bring drinking water. In the Winter, well, it’s just beautiful!

  1. Bring your own bags and a cooler. Some growers have recycled shopping bags. Remember to wash your bags regularly. A cooler will keep your produce fresh until it gets home.

  1. Decompress and have fun. A trip to the farm is a great way to enjoy the great outdoors, learn where your food comes from and spend time with family.

Regardless, you’ll have fun on the farm if you plan ahead. Are you looking for a unique variety of arugula? Want to meet a farmer? Then it’s time to plan a visit to an Arizona farm.

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